Full-time SWF FAQs for Spring 2020

Table of Contents

Messages from your Local 237 President:

April 27, 2020

April 17, 2020

April 13, 2020

April 07, 2020

March 21, 2020

Latest FAQs



Answers to FAQs

Will there be lay-offs?

Conestoga was in sound financial shape heading into this crisis and is probably better positioned than many other colleges to weather the impact of COVID-19. Some of you have asked about layoffs. The best answer at this time is that none of the conditions in our Collective Agreement have been triggered that can initiate layoffs. If you wish to know more about the process of layoffs please refer to Article 27.05 -27.09 on pages 63 to 68, in your Collective Agreement.

On April 2, 2020 the Union requested that the College Employment Stability Committee hold a meeting to discuss the current stability of employment for full-time faculty. At the meeting the Union and the College discussed sharing the following statement: 

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“The President of Local 237 called a meeting of the Employment Stability Committee. The results of the meeting are that there is no employment instability to report at this time.”

Many of you also saw the article in The Record on March 31, 2020 where President Tibbits said “The college has no layoff plans. The article also refers to reducing employees through the retirement incentive hiring freeze.

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Will an extension be given to faculty to submit their final grades this semester?

“The grades submission deadline for the winter semester has been extended to May 8.

Please refer to Faculty Winter 2020 FAQs on Colleges COVID-19 information page

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I already have a SWF for the Spring/Summer semester. Will it be revised?

Yes it must be changed to reflect “all details of the total workload (Article 11.02 A2 on p. 18)”. This means that faculty will be signing SWFs remotely as per a College and Union agreement reached early last week. The workload will be revised because there will be no course offerings at level one for classes with mainly international students. The College is realigning the sections and will assign the work on a revised SWF.

The Union has also been advocating for the recognition of the work involved in redeveloping a course into a remote delivery. Many faculty are reporting that they are spending an average of 3 hours or for every hour that they teach remotely. Faculty are also reporting a significant increase in providing support to students. This tends to be in emails which are particularly time consuming if the students have diverse needs and or limited English skills and/or limited technology skills. 

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What do I do if the revised SWF does not include all details of the total workload?

When you get your SWF electronically, review it carefully to determine if the assignment includes all details of your total workload. If it does not then check the middle box “Proposed Workload referred to College Workload Monitoring Group.”

The process for having your workload reviewed by the Workload Monitoring Group is described starting with Article 11.02 A6 on page 18 to Article 11.2 G on page 22.

This process will start with a Zoom meeting with your Chair within 14 days of the return of the SWF. Please refer to Article 11.02 A6 (a) on p. 18. 

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Did the College change the vacation period for faculty normally on vacation in July or August?

In the communication dated April 8, 2010 from Shelley Schenk, Associate VP Human Resources the following statement was made:

We expect that most faculty vacation entitlements will be taken between May 4 and August 7 depending on program needs.”

This is a recommended period but it may not be the same start and end date for every full-time faculty with vacation in June and July. It is important to discuss your vacation plans with your Chair. It will also depend on plans in individual programs. In most cases, the scheduled APR and MPR are on pause. But this is not the case for every program. PEQAB has also been put on pause. Please check with your Chair for the specific plan in your School/program. 

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Can the College assign my vacation?

Yes. The College can assign your vacation but must give 4 weeks’ notice. Please refer to Article 15.02 on p. 31.

According to the HR Communication on April 8, 2020 “As of April 8, 2020, all vacation time that was previously planned and/or entered into the employee portal will be considered approved and cannot be cancelled or removed.” 

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I already entered my vacation on the portal and it included vacation from August 17-21 to attend a wedding/a family reunion/ or to holiday at a resort/cottage.

Faculty who have vacation after the recommended end date should discuss this with their Chair by email. If the planned activity is past August 7, 202 the vacation plans will be honoured.

According to the HR Communication on April 8, 2020 “As of April 8, 2020, all vacation time that was previously planned and/or entered into the employee portal will be considered approved and cannot be cancelled or removed.”

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If I have too much work to do to prepare my courses or the vacation I planned is cancelled due to COVID-19 will I be allowed to carry-over the vacation days?

According to the April 8, 2020 communication from HR, “Faculty will not be permitted to carry over vacation.”

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Will I still be entitled to 10 professional development days?

Article 11.01 H3 ensures that “The College shall allow each teacher at least ten working days of professional development in each academic year.” And that “at least five (days are) consecutive working days (Article 11.01 H2 on p. 16). The ten PD days must be used before August 31, 2020..

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Can PD activities be assigned by my Chair?

PD can be assigned on a SWF. However, the annual PD days are arranged “following discussion between the supervisor and the teacher ….and such arrangement shall not be unreasonably withheld. (Article 11.01 H3 on p. 16).

This means that what you do with the ten PD days is based on mutual agreement. It is unlikely that the Chair will deny the leave but it is possible that the dates will need to be a mutual agreement.

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Due to COVID-19 will I be allowed to carry-over the ten PD days if I cannot use all ten?

You cannot carry over the annual ten PD days.

If you have additional questions please contact your steward or me and we will answer your questions and add them to this FAQ.

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Please refer to www.local237.ca to find contact information for your steward.  Always use your private/home email to reach out to a steward. My private email address is lhardacre237@gmail.com


In Solidarity

Lana-Lee Hardacre

OPSEU Local 237 President

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